Public Works Department
Wastewater Sewer Ordinance
An ordinance regulating the use of public and private sewers and drains, the installation and connection of building sewers, and the discharge of waters and wastes into the community or multi-use sewerage systems; and providing penalties for violations thereof; in the corporate limits of the Town of Ocean City, County of Worcester, State of Maryland.
Be it ordained and enacted by the Mayor and City Council, Town of Ocean City, County of Worcester, State of Maryland as follows:
Unless the context specifically indicates otherwise, the meaning of terms used in this ordinance shall be as follows:
Sec. 1 "Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD)"
shall mean the quantity of oxygen utilized in the biochemical oxidation of organic matter under standard laboratory procedure in five (5) days of 20C, expressed in milligrams per liter.
Sec. 2 "Building Drain"
shall mean that part of the lowest piping of a drainage system which receives the discharge from soil, waste, and other drainage pipes inside the walls of the building and conveys it to the building sewer beginning three (3) feet outside the building wall.
Sec. 3 "Building Sewer"
shall mean that part of the drainage system which extends from the end of the building drain and conveys its discharge to a community or multi-use sewerage system, private sewer, individual sewage-disposal system or other pint of disposal.
Sec. 4 "Combined Sewer"
shall mean a sewer intended to receive both wastewater and storm or surface water.
Sec. 5 "Community or Multi-Use Sewerage System"
shall mean a common sewer directly controlled by public authority or public utility.
Sec. 6 "Easement"
shall mean an acquired legal right for the specific use of land owned by others.
Sec. 7 "Floatable Oil"
is oil, fat or grease in a physical state such that it will separate by gravity from wastewater by treatment in an approved pretreatment facility. A wastewater shall be considered free of floatable fat if it is properly pretreated and the wastewater does not interfere with the collection system.
Sec. 8 "Garbage"
shall mean the animal and vegetable waste resulting from the handling, preparation, cooking and serving of food.
Sec. 9 "Individual Sewerage Systems"
shall mean a system for disposal of domestic sewage by means of a septic tank, cesspool or mechanical treatment, designed for use apart from a public sewer to serve a single establishment or building.
Sec. 10 "Industrial Wastes"
shall mean liquid or liquid-born wastes resulting from the processes employed in industrial and commercial establishments.
Sec. 11 "Natural Outlet"
shall mean any outlet, including storm sewers and combined sewer overflows, into a water course, pond, ditch, lake or body of surface or groundwater.
Sec. 12 "May"
The word "may" is a permissive term.
Sec. 13 "Person"
shall mean a natural person, his heirs, executors, administrators or assigns; and includes a firm, association, partnership or corporation, its or their successors or assigns. Singular includes plural; male includes female.
Sec. 14 "pH"
shall mean the logarithm of the reciprocal of the hydrogen ion concentration. The concentration is the weight of hydrogen ions, in grams, per liter of solution.
Sec. 15 "Properly Shredded Garbage"
shall mean the wastes from the preparation, cooking and dispensing of food that have been shredded to such a degree that all particles will be carried freely under the flow conditions normally prevailing in public sewers, with no particle greater that inch (1.27 centimeters) in any dimension.
Sec. 16 "Sanitary Sewer"
shall mean a sewer that carries liquid and water-carried wastes from residences, commercial buildings, industrial plants and institutions together with minor quantities of ground, storm and surface waters that are not admitted intentionally.
Sec. 17 "Sewage"
shall mean any liquid waste containing animal or vegetable matter in suspension or solution, and may include liquids containing chemicals in solution. The preferred term is wastewater. (See Section 25.)
Sec. 18 "Sewer"
shall mean a pipe or conduit that carries waste water or drainage water.
Sec. 19 "Shall"
"Shall" is a mandatory term.
Sec. 20 "Slug"
shall mean any discharge of water or wastewater which in concentration of any given constituent or in quantity of flow exceeds for any period of duration longer than fifteen (15) minutes more than five (5) times the average twenty-four (24) hours concentration or flows during normal operation and shall adversely affect the collection system and/or performance of the wastewater treatment works.
Sec. 21 "Storm Drain" (sometimes termed "Storm Sewer")
shall mean a drain or sewer for conveying water, groundwater, subsurface water or unpolluted water from any source.
Sec. 22 "Superintendent"
shall mean the Superintendent, Wastewater Department, Town of Ocean City, or his authorized deputy, agent or representative.
Sec. 23 "Suspended Solids"
shall mean total suspended matter that either floats on the surface of, or is in suspension in, water, wastewater or other liquids, and that is removable by laboratory filtering as prescribed in "Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater" and referred to as nonfilterable residue.
Sec. 24 "Unpolluted Water"
shall mean water of quality equal to or better than the effluent criteria in effect or water that would not cause violation of receiving water quality standards and would not be benefitted by discharge to the sanitary sewers and wastewater treatment facilities provided.
Sec. 25 "Wastewater"
shall mean the spent water of a community. From the standpoint of source, it may be a combination of the liquid and water-carried wastes from residences, commercial buildings, industrial plants and institutions, together with any ground water, surface water and stormwater that may be present.
Sec. 26 "Wastewater Facilities"
shall mean an arrangement of devices and structures for treating wastewater, industrial wastes and sludge. Sometimes used as synonymous with "Waste Treatment Plant" or "Water Pollution Control Plant".
Sec. 27 "Watercourse"
shall mean a natural or artificial channel for the passage of water either continuously or intermittently.
Sec. 28 "Worcester County Sanitarian"
shall mean a person who is the authorized deputy, agent or representative of the Worcester County Health Department.
Use Of Public Sewers Required
Sec. 1 It shall be unlawful for any person to place, deposit or permit to be deposited in any unsanitary manner on public or private property with the Town of Ocean City, or in any area under the jurisdiction of said Town, any human or animal excrement, garbage or any objectionable waste.
Sec. 2 It shall be unlawful to discharge to any natural outlet within the Town of Ocean City, or in any area under the jurisdiction of said Town, any wastewater or other polluted wastes, except where suitable treatment has been provided in accordance with subsequent provisions of this ordinance.
Sec. 3 Except as hereinafter provided, it shall be unlawful to construct or maintain any privy, privy vault, septic tank, cesspool or other facility intended or used for the collection, treatment and disposal of wastewater.
Sec. 4 The owner(s) of all houses, buildings or properties used for human occupancy, employment, recreation or other purposes, situated within the Town of Ocean City and abutting on any street, alley or right of way in which there is now located, or in the future may be located, a public sanitary sewer system belonging to the Town of Ocean City, is hereby required at his expense to install suitable toilet facilities therein, and to connect such facilities to the community or multi-use sewerage system in accordance with the provisions of this ordinance, with thirty (30) days after date of official notice to do so.
Building Sewers And Connections
Sec. 1 No unauthorized person(s) shall uncover, make any connections with or opening into, use, alter or disturb any community or multi-use sewerage system thereof without first obtaining a written permit from the Town of Ocean City. All hook-ups shall be made in compliance with Maryland State Plumbing Code and Town of Ocean City Plumbing Regulations.
Sec. 2 There shall be two (2) classes of building sewer permits: (a) for residential and commercial service and (b) for service to establishments producing industrial wastes. In either case, the owner(s) or his agent shall make application on a special form furnished by the Town of Ocean City. The permit application shall be supplemented by any plans, specifications or other information considered pertinent in the judgement of the Plumbing Inspector. A permit and inspection fee for a building plumbing permit shall be paid to the Town of Ocean City at the time the application is filed.
Sec. 3 All costs and expenses incidental to the installation and connection of the building sewer shall be borne by the owner(s). The owner(s) shall indemnify the Town of Ocean City for any loss or damage that may directly or indirectly be occasioned by the installation of the building sewer.
Sec. 4 A separate and independent building sewer shall be provided for every building except where one building stands at the rear of another on an interior lot and no individual sewer is available or can be constructed to the rear building through an adjoining alley, court yard or driveway, the building sewer may be extended to the rear building and the whole considered as one building sewer, but the Town of Ocean City does not and will not assume any obligation or responsibility for damage caused by or resulting from any such single connection aforementioned.
Sec. 5 Old building sewers may be used in connection with new buildings only when they are found, on examination and test by the Plumbing Inspector, Town of Ocean City, to meet all requirements of this ordinance, the Maryland State Plumbing Regulations and the Town of Ocean City Plumbing Regulations.
Sec. 6 The size, slope, alignment, materials of construction of a building sewer and the methods to be used in excavating, placing of the pipe, jointing, testing and backfilling the trench, shall all conform to the requirements of the Maryland State Plumbing Regulations and the Town of Ocean City Plumbing Regulations or other applicable rules and regulations of the Town of Ocean City. In the absence of code provisions or in amplification thereof, the materials and procedures set forth in appropriate specifications of the A.S.T.M. and Water Pollution Control Federation Manual of Practice #9 shall apply.
Sec. 7 Whenever possible, the building sewer shall be brought to the building at an elevation below the basement floor. In all buildings, in which any building drain is too low to permit gravity flow to the public sewer, sanitary sewage carried by such building drain shall be lifted by approved pump facilities and discharged to the building sewer, in accordance with the Maryland State Plumbing Regulations.
Sec. 8 No person(s) shall make connection of roof downspouts, foundation drains, areaway drains or other sources of surface runoff or groundwater to building sewer or building drain which in turn is connected directly or indirectly to a community or multi-use sewerage system, unless such connection is approved by the Superintendent, Wastewater Department, Town of Ocean City, for purposes of disposal of polluted surface drainage.
Sec. 9 The connection of the building sewer into the community or multi-use sewerage system shall conform to the requirements of the Maryland State Plumbing Code and the Town of Ocean City Plumbing Regulations, or other applicable rules and regulations of the Town of Ocean City or the procedures set forth in appropriate specifications of the A.S.T.M. and Water Pollution Control Federation Manual of Practice #9. All such connections shall be made gas-tight and water-tight and verified by proper testing. Any deviation from the prescribed procedures and materials must be approved by the Superintendent, Town of Ocean City, before installation.
Sec. 10 The applicant for the building sewer permit shall notify the Town of Ocean City when the building sewer is ready for inspection and connection to the public sewer. The connection and testing shall be made under the supervision of the Plumbing Inspector or his representative.
Sec. 11 All excavations for building sewer installations shall be adequately guarded with barricades and lights so as to protect the public form hazard. Streets, sidewalks, parkways and other public property disturbed in the course of the work shall be restored in a manner satisfactory to the Town of Ocean City.
Sec. 12 Where groundwater is encountered at the point of connection to public sewer, excavation shall be pumped dry before the plug is removed from the public sewer. Public sewer connections shall not be used to drain ditches.
Use Of Public Sewers
Sec. 1 No person(s) shall discharge or cause to be discharged any unpolluted water such as stormwater, surface water, groundwater, roof runoff, sub surface drainage, uncontaminated cooling water or unpolluted industrial process waters to any sanitary sewer unless approved by the Superintendent, Wastewater Department, Town of Ocean City.
Sec. 2 Stormwater and all other unpolluted drainage shall be discharged to such sewers as are specifically designated as combined sewers or storm sewers or to a natural outlet approved by the Engineer, Town of Ocean City, and other regulatory agencies. Industrial cooling water or process waters may be discharged, on approval of the Superintendent, to a storm sewer or natural outlet.
Sec. 3 No person(s) shall discharge or cause to be discharged any of the following described waters of wastes to any community or multi-use sewerage systems:
a. Any gasoline, benzene, naphtha, fuel oil or other flammable or explosive liquid, solid or gas.
b. Any waters or wastes containing toxic or poisonous solids, liquids or gases in sufficient quantity, either singly or by interaction with other wastes, to injure or interfere with any wastewater treatment process, constitute a hazard to humans or animals, create a public nuisance or create any hazard in the receiving waters of the wastewater treatment plant, including but not limited to cyanides in excess of two (2) mg/l CN in the wastes as discharged to the community or multi-use sewerage system.
c. Any waters or wastes having a pH lower than 6.0 or having any other corrosive property capable of causing damage or hazard to structures, equipment and personnel of the wastewater works.
d. Solid or viscous substances in quantities or of such size capable of causing obstruction to the flow in sewers, or other interference with the proper operation of the wastewater facilities such as, but not limited to, ashes, bones, cinders, shells, sand mud, straw, shavings, metal, glass, feathers, rags, tar, plastics, wood, unground garbage, whole blood, paunch manure, hair, fleshings, entrails and paper dishes, cups milk containers, etc. either whole or ground by garbage grinders.
Sec. 4 No person shall discharge or cause to be discharged in the community or multi-use sewerage system the following describe substances, materials, waters or wastes, if it appears likely in the opinion of the Superintendent, Wastewater Department, Town of Ocean City, that such wastes can harm either the sewers, wastewater treatment process or any equipment, have an adverse effect on the receiving stream, or can otherwise endanger life, limb, public property or constitute a nuisance. In forming his opinion as to the acceptability of these wastes, the Superintendent, Wastewater Department, Town of Ocean City, will give consideration to such factors as: the quantities of subject wastes in relation to flows and velocities in the sewers, materials of construction of the sewers, the wastewater treatment process employed, capacity of the wastewater treatment plant, degree of treatability of the waste in the wastewater treatment plant, and other pertinent factors. The substances prohibited are:
a. Wastewater having a temperature higher than one hundred fifty degrees (150F)(65C).
b. Wastewater containing fats, wax, grease or oils, whether emulsified or not, in excess of twenty-five (25) mg/l or containing substances which may solidify or become viscous at temperatures between thirty-two degrees (32F) and one hundred fifty (150 F) (0 to 65 C).
c. Any garbage that has not been properly shredded. Garbage grinders may be connected to sanitary sewers from homes, hotels, institutions, restaurants, hospitals, catering establishments or similar places where garbage originates from the preparation of food in kitchens for the purpose of consumption on the premises, or when served by caterers.
d. Any waters or wastes containing iron, chromium, copper, zinc and similar objectionable or toxic substances or wastes exerting an excessive chlorine requirement, to such degree that any such material received in the composite wastewater at the wastewater treatment works exceeds the limits established by the Town of Ocean City for such materials.
e. Any waters or wastes containing strong acid, iron pickling wastes or concentrated plating solutions whether neutralized or not.
f. Any waters or wastes containing phenols or other taste or odor-producing substances, exceeding limits which may be established by the Town of Ocean City.
g. Any radioactive wastes or isotopes of such half-life or concentration as may exceed limits established by the Town of Ocean City in compliance with applicable State or Federal Regulations.
h. Any wastewater having a pH in excess of 9.5 or less than 6.
i. Materials which exert or cause:
(1) Unusual concentrations of inert suspended solids. (Such as, but not limited to, Fullers Earth, lime slurries and lime residues of dissolved solids (such as but not limited to dye, wastes and vegetable tanning solutions.)
(2) Excessive discoloration (such as, but not limited to, dye, wastes and vegetable tanning solutions.)
(3) Unusual BOD, chemicals, oxygen demand or chlorine requirements in such quantities as to constitute a significant load on the wastewater treatment system.
(4) Unusual volume of flow or concentration of wastes constituting "slugs" as defined herein.
j. Waters or wastes containing substances which are not amenable to treatment or reduction by the wastewater treatment processes employed or are amenable to treatment only to such degree that the wastewater treatment plant effluent cannot meet the requirements of other agencies having jurisdiction over discharge to the receiving waters.
k. Any water or wastes which, by interaction with other water or wastes in the public sewer system, release obnoxious gases, form suspended solid which interfere with the collection system, or create a condition deleterious to structures and treatment processes.
Sec. 5 If any waters or wastes are discharged, or are proposed to be discharged to the community or multi-use sewerage system, which waters contain the substances or possess the characteristics enumerated in Section 4 of this article, and which, in the judgment of the Town of Ocean City, may have a deleterious effect upon the wastewater facilities processes, equipment or receiving waters, or which otherwise create a hazard to life or constitute a public nuisance, the Town of Ocean City:
a. Reject the wastes,
b. Require pretreatment to an acceptable condition for discharge to the community or multi-use sewerage system,
c. Require control over the quantities and rates of discharge, and/or
d. Require payment to cover added cost of handling and treatment of the wastes not covered by existing taxes or sewer charges under the provisions of Section 10 of this article.
If the Town of Ocean City permits the pretreatment or equalization of waste flows the design and installation of the plants and equipment shall be subject to review and approval of the Superintendent, Wastewater Department, Town of Ocean City, and subject to the requirements of all applicable codes, ordinances and laws.
Sec. 6 Grease, oil and sand interceptors shall be provided when, in the opinion of the Superintendent, Wastewater Department, Town of Ocean City, they are necessary for the proper handling of liquid wastes containing grease in excessive amounts, or any flammable wastes, sand or harmful ingredients; except that such interceptors shall not be required for private living quarters or dwelling units. All interceptors shall be of a type and capacity approved by the Superintendent, Wastewater Department, Town of Ocean City and shall be located as to be readily and easily accessible for cleaning and inspection. In the maintaining of these interceptors the owner (s) shall be responsible for the proper removal and disposal by appropriate means of the captured material and shall maintain records of the dates and means of disposal which are subject to review by the Superintendent, Wastewater Department,, Wastewater Department, Town of Ocean City. Any removal and hauling of the collected materials not performed by owner (s) personnel must be performed by approved waste disposal firms and disposed of in an approved manner and location.
Sec. 7 Where pre-treatment of flow-equalizing facilities are provided for any waters or wastes, they shall be maintained continuously in satisfactory and effective operation by the owner at his expense.
Sec. 8 When required by the Superintendent, Wastewater Department, Town of Ocean City, the owner of any property serviced by a building sewer carrying industrial wastes shall install a suitable control manhole together with such necessary meters and other appurtenances in the building sewer to facilitate observation, sampling, and measurement of the wastes. Such manhole, when required, shall be accessible and safely located and shall be constructed in accordance with plans approved by the Superintendent, Wastewater Department, Town of Ocean City. The manhole shall be installed by the owner at his expense and shall be maintained by him so as to be safe and accessible at all times.
Sec. 9 The Superintendent, Wastewater Department, Town of Ocean City may require a user of sewer services to provide information needed to determine compliance with this ordinance. These requirements may include:
(1) Wastewater discharge peak rate and volume over a specified time period.
(2) Chemical analysis of wastewaters.
(3) Information on raw materials, processes and products affecting wastewater volume and quality.
(4) Quantity and disposition of specific liquid, sludge, oil, solvent, or other materials important to sewer use control.
(5) A plot plan of sewers of the user's property showing sewer and pretreatment facility location.
(6) Details of wastewater pretreatment facilities.
(7) Details of systems to prevent and control the losses of materials through spills to the public sewer.
Sec. 10 All measurements, tests, and analyses of the characteristics of waters and wastes to which reference is made in this ordinance shall be determined in accordance with the latest edition of "Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater", published by the American Public Health Association, and shall be determined at the control manhole provided, or upon suitable samples taken at said control manhole. In the event that no special manhole has been required, the control manhole shall be considered to be the nearest downstream manhole in the community or multi-use sewerage system at the point at which the building sewer is connected. Sampling shall be carried out by customarily accepted methods to reflect the effect of hazards to life, limb or property. The particular analyses involved will determine whether a twenty-four (24) hour composite of all outfalls of a premise is appropriate or whether a grab sample or samples should be taken. Normally, but not always, BOD and Suspended Solids analyses are obtained from 24 hour composites of all outfalls where as pH's are determined from periodic grab samples.
Sec. 11 No statement contained in this article shall be construed as preventing any special agreement or arrangement between the Town of Ocean City and any industrial concern whereby an industrial waste of unusual strength or character may be accepted by the Town of Ocean City for treatment, subject to payment therefore, by the industrial concern.
Protection From Damage
Sec. 1 No person shall maliciously, willfully, or negligently break, damage, destroy, uncover, deface, or tamper with any structure, appurtenance, or equipment which is a part of the community or multi-use sewerage system. Any person violating this provision shall be subject to possible legal action or penalties.
Powers And Authority Of Inspectors
Sec. 1 The Superintendent, Wastewater Department, Town of Ocean City and other duly authorized employees of the Town of Ocean City bearing proper credentials and identification shall be permitted to enter all properties for the purposes of inspection, observation, measurement, sampling and testing in accordance with the provisions of this ordnance.
Sec. 2 The Superintendent, Wastewater Department, Town of Ocean City or other duly authorized employees are authorized to obtain information concerning industrial processes which have a direct bearing on the kind and source of discharge to the wastewater collection system. The industry may withhold information considered confidential. The industry must establish that the revelation to the public of the information in question might result in an advantage to competitors.
Sec. 3 While performing the necessary work on private properties, referred to in Article VII, Section 1, above, the Superintendent, Wastewater Department, Town of Ocean City or duly authorized employees of the Town of Ocean City shall observe all safety rules applicable to the premises established by the company, and the company shall be held harmless for injury or death to the Town of Ocean City employees, and the Town of Ocean City shall indemnify the company against loss or damage to its property by the Town of Ocean City employees and against liability claims and demands for personal injury or property damage asserted against the company and growing out of the gauging and sampling operation, except as such maybe caused by negligence or failure of the company to maintain safe conditions as required in Article V, Section 8.
Sec. 4 The Superintendent, Wastewater Department, Town of Ocean City and other duly authorized employees of the Town of Ocean City bearing proper credentials and identification shall be permitted to enter all private properties through which the Town of Ocean City holds a duly negotiated easement for the purpose of, but not limited to, inspection, observation, measurement, sampling, repair, and maintenance of any portion of the Wastewater Facilities lying within said easement. All entry and subsequent work, if any, on said easement, shall be done in full accordance with the terms of the duly negotiated easement pertaining to the private property involved.
Sec. 1 Any person found to be violating any provision of this ordinance except Article VI, shall be served, by the Town of Ocean City, with written notice stating the nature of the violation and providing a reasonable time limit for the satisfactory correction thereof. The offender shall, within the period of time stated in such notice, permanently cease and correct all violations.
Sec. 2 Any person who shall continue any violation beyond the time limit provided for in Article VIII, Section 1, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and on conviction thereof shall be fined in the amount not exceeding one hundred dollars (100) for each violation, or thirty (30) days in jail.
Sec. 3 Any person violating any of the provisions of this ordinance shall become liable to the Town of Ocean City for any expense, loss, or damage occasioned by the Town of Ocean City by reason of such violation.
Sec. 1 All ordinances or parts of ordinances in conflict herewith are hereby repealed.
Sec. 2 The validity of any section, clause, sentence, or provision of this ordinance shall not effect the validity of any other part of this ordinance which can be given effect without such invalid part or parts.